Eleven_Cisneros

Eleven_Cisneros - I-‘lRST VINTAGE CflNTEMPQRfiHIES...

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Unformatted text preview: I-‘lRST VINTAGE CflNTEMPQRfiHIES EDITION. MARCH 1:992 (help-tall! {3 199: lag-I Sandra Gimme ions] and Pen-American Cflp‘friglll Conventions. Vintage Books. a division of Random House. inc. by Handyman Houseofflaneda. Limited. Inc" New York, N! rights reserved under Internet Published in. the United States by New York. and simultaneoust in Canada Toronto. fln'ginelly published in hardWCIh-f Random House. in. tggt. Grateful acknowleder is made to the following. for pmssiem m reprint miwsly published meterlal: hRTE NJan page: "Mexican Mot-ice“ he Sandro Cisnems was first published in the Ansell-lea: Harlem. ‘Ir'olurne .5. No. 3-4. Reprinted by permission. TRADITIEI'JN musre mm mm: Excerpt Fmrn the son San Antonio" hf Santiago }imenez. {Wright '31 by Tradition M usit: Cu. {B M I}. Reprinted by permiesinn. Some ol the stories in this wutrlt were originally published 'm We Refine Dru-rand Street. Humean . lo: Marilee Time Magazine. The Saguaro. Story. and The 1r'lllege three lire-retry Supplemt. {if Te Dejo en Library of Cemgress Cataloging-in-Publiration Dare Gist-term. Sandro. 'L'lrhrnan hollering creek and other stories Vintage onetemperafies ed. p. cm.-—Wfl11ageeontemporkrlefi]l "Orifirm'fly whlished in hurdemrerbj' Bend-mil House. lne.. New York. in r99:"—-T.-p. verse. ISBN D-fi'j'g'?3$55-E I . Mexican Amerieano— Fiction. Helium I. Title. [Pfiggggifiwfifi room] 313,“. 3.1-»—dr:1o QI'SEDDZ Cl? l Sandra Cienems.— let. 2. Mexleenrfinutriean Border Regime— Book design b1.- Susan Shapiro Menufemrred' In the United Stetes offimm'm to o 3 ' t. rst mywflewrf’lflh Wpfim Lhtkrwfi— chars.— .fli33jgr; I{ll-l" 8.5 Elf fish. ale-him“ mm 'lDrnfsu.d,‘l'E~A-D aloe). .wlyar understand about What they'never-i tell you-is-that when you're eleven. you're‘also ten...and nine,'antli| Eight, and seven. and six. and five1 and four.=.=and three,-and two. .. and'one; And when .you wake. up on your eleventh birthday you" expect to feel eleven. but you don‘t. You open your eyes and every- thing's just like yesterday. only it's today. rind you don't'l‘eeleleven a. at -a||-. You feel like you're still ten. find you are—underneath the. year dietamakcsjyou. eleven. “Like some days you might. say something-stupidy'and’ that-la then part-of you that's still ten: Or maybe some-days. you mightneed to sit on your mama's lap-because you're-scared. and that's the 'part 'of- you that's five. Find maybe one day when you’re all grown up maybe you will need to cry like if you're three. and that's okay. : That's what I tell Mama when she's sad and needs to cry. shes-feebng-ehree. I I: “I arflocauoe: the-way you-grow-old is kind oE-lilte mflfihfi‘oflke the I fill” wingsinside-atree trunk or like-my little wooden dolls that fit one- i we I.._-i—I——_- .__ ELEVEN‘? -- inside the other. each year- inside thenemu'fltatglsshow being. -eleven- years old is. You don't feel eleven. Not right away. It takes a few days, weeks even, sometimes even months before you say Eleven when they ask you. And you don't feel smart eleven. not until you're almost twelve. That's the way it is. iflnly- today I'wish indidn't Wemly-elevemyears rattling insidp meld box: Today i wish 1 was one we Mammals—33L hundred and two instead of eleven because if i was one hundred and two I'd have known what to say when Mrs. Price put the red sweater on my desk. 1 would've known how to tell her it wasn't mine instead of just sitting there with that look on my Face and nothing coming out. of my mouth. “Whose is this?" l'vlrs. Price says. and she holds the red sweater up in the air for all the class to see. "Whose? It's been sitting in the coatnoorn for a month." "Not mine." says everybody. "Not me." e‘jlt- has to belong to somebody,“ Mrs. Price keeps safingeib‘ot nobodyean memberwltls an ugly sweater with red plastic buttons and a collar and sleeves all stretched out like you could use it for a jump rope. lt's maybe a thousand years old and even if it belonged to me I wouldn't say so. Maybebeeause Fm skinny. maybe" because she doesn't likeme. . that stupid Sylvia Saldivar says. “I think-it belongs to Rachel.§ Fin ugly sweater like that. all raggedy and old. but Mrs. Price believes her. l'vlrs. Priee takes the sweater and puts it right on my desk. but when i open my mouth ngghiog—cem-SJIJL '“Thatis not. i donitt'you'r'e not . . . 'Not mine,.'" 1 finally say in .mlittle-voice'that was maybe me when l was'l‘onr. "Of course it's yours," Mrs. P‘rlee says. "i remember you wearing it once."‘Because she's-older and the teacher. she's right and I'm- ‘. not": 'i fl-tuv Lucy eatenn wno sMELLs Lists. coast but Mrs. Price is already turning to page thirty-two. and math problem number four. I don't know why but all of a sudden I'm feeling sick inside, like the part of me that's three wants to come out of my eyes, only I squceze them shut tight and bite down on my teeth real hard and try to remember today [ am eleven, eleven. Mama is making a cake for me for tonight, and when Papa comes home everybody will sing Happy birthday, happy birthday to you. But when the sick feeling goes away and i open my eyes. the red sweater's still sitting there like a big red mountain. I move the red sweater to the corner of my desk with my ruler. ] move my pencil and books and eraser as Far from it as possible. I even move my chair a little to the right. Nflhminhsm=mme~minn [n my head l'm thinking how long till lunchtime, how long till I can take the red sweater and throw it over the schoolyard fence, or leave it hanging on a parking meter, or hunch it up into a little ball and toss it in the alley. Except when rnath period ends Mrs. Price says loud and in front of everybody. "Now. Rachel. that's enough," because she sees ['ve shoved the red sweater to the tippy- tip corner of my desk and it's hanging all over the edge like a wdterfall. but I don't care. 'IIIL r"l-lac'h'elz-'-' Mrs“ Frisesays. She-says it- like she's getting mark "Youtput that-sweater-on right-now and no more~n0nsense.-':3 "all: it"s riot—'5" This is when I wish I wasn't eleven. because all the years inside of me—ten. nine. eight. seven. six. five. four. thrEE, two, and one—are pushing at the back of my eyes when l put one arm through one sleeve of the sweater that smells like cottage cheese. and then the other arm through the other and stand there with my arms apart like if the sweater hurts me and it does, all itchy and full of germs that aren't even mine. EcevEN-o That's- when eeel'ythingl've brien holding insince this morning, .- sainee-when Mrs. Price.th Lbs sweater-tin my desk. finally lets go,- sand-all of a sudden I'm crying. in Front of everybody. i wish I. was invisible-but I'm not. I'm eleven and it's my birthday today and l'm crying like I'm three in front of everybody. I put my head down on the desk and bury my face in my stupid clown-sweater arms. My face all hot and spit coming out of my mouth bmause I can't stop the little animal noises from coming out of me, until there aren't any more tears left in my eyes. and it's just my body shaking like when you have the hiccups. and my whole head hurts like when you drink milk too fast. But the worst part is right before the bell rings for lunch. What! Phyllis whats” even dumber-than dylyie-Saldiean esaysaheramemhers the-red sweater-is hersi==l..talte-ieofli-right-away. v .andz-eise-ir-o her- Today I'm eleven. There's a cake Mama's making for tonight, and when Papa comes home from work we'll eat it. There'll be candles and presents and everybody will sing Happy birthday. happy birthday to your Rachel, only it's too late. I'm eleven today. ]'m eleven. ten. nine, eight. seven. six. five. four. three. two, and one, but I wish i was one hundred and two. whiff-was seating-set. eleve'n;'beea1i'se 1 want today to be fang away.-already,.--far-'away like a runaway balloon, liken tiny-o in [litre elm; aotiny—tinyyon have to-close.your=e1.res to see ith ...
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Eleven_Cisneros - I-‘lRST VINTAGE CflNTEMPQRfiHIES...

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